Agenda item

Licensing Board


Councillor Gilding referred to Minute No. P17 (Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Licensing Policy), specifically Section C(iv), where it strengthened the wording so that applicants were directly informed that they must not make a false statement or a false declaration during any part of the application process and asked how basic could this be if applicants could not understand this they should not be issued with a licence.


In addition, he asked for an explanation on Section D(i) where reference was made to the distinction between sexual offences against another person and other offences involving indecency and asked on Section D(iii) for clarification of how the service would know if a licensed driver had been absent from the United Kingdom for a continuous period exceeding one month


Referring to Section D(v) Councillor Gilding believed that this was originally a condition of being issued with a licence that when carrying passengers who were vulnerable or who had a disability that they be asked if they required assistance.


Referring to Section E(v) and the consultation to take place on a Cabsafe Scheme incorporating Gold, Silver and Bronze rating standards, Councillor Gilding suggested that given the experiences over the last few months that every taxi in Rotherham should be looking to become Gold standard, but noted there was still to be no age limit on vehicles transporting the people of Rotherham and asked why this was the case.


The Chairman of the Licensing Board explained the distinction between sexual offences and indecency and provided an example of the two.


There was a requirement for licensed drivers to hand in their licences should they be wishing to leave the country for a period longer than four weeks and to receive them back on their return.  This was part of the consultation process and was not yet adopted.


It was pointed out that the intention of the Cabsafe Scheme was to drive up standards.  There were some aspects to be included that would seek to improve standards for the comfort of the travelling public of Rotherham and it would induce the operators to improve standards by aspiring in the higher categories.  The Licensing Board discussed the option of C.C.T.V. and it was the view that this should be mandatory and standard in each vehicle.


Basic requirements of the policy such as providing assistance were included to ensure that the public of Rotherham could expect this level of service.


In a supplementary question Councillor Gilding asked if he could be told who would be operating the Cabsafe Scheme, how much this would cost, how this would be monitored and how would the general public know how a particular vehicle was rated.  Would this result in a member of the public choosing to take a particular rated vehicle over and above another rated lower?


The Chairman of the Licensing Board advised that the costs of the scheme would be borne by the operators and the Council would operate and direct the scheme.  This was still a proposal and much of the detail was yet to be worked through.  The consultation did not finish until the end of December and any comments could be fed into the process via the Council’s website.


Resolved:-  That the reports and minutes of the meeting of the Licensing Board (Section P (Pages 11P to 18P) be adopted.


Mover:-  Councillor Dalton                        Seconder:-  The Mayor

                                                                       (Councillor John Foden)

Supporting documents: